In a report from the National Institutes of Health, nearly half a million Americans went to emergency rooms after motor vehicle accidents during 2010. In fact, more than half of all vehicle-related injuries are related to the eyes. These affected people then file for a personal injury claim in Nevada. It is always recommended to enlist the services of a Nevada personal injury attorney.
About one in four of these reported incidents involved airbags, which are supposed to save lives. But at the same time, NHTSA estimates that as of 2017, 50,457 lives have been saved by frontal airbags as well.
In another report published in Current Eye Research, the authors explain that the most common injuries from a deploying airbag are to the side of the face, especially the eyes. These injuries include corneal abrasions or lacerations, and when the eyes are hit directly by a deploying airbag, retinal detachment and vitreous hemorrhage can sometimes occur.
Fortunately, most injuries to the eyes are minor. However, very serious eye injuries have occurred as well, including temporary blindness and permanent vision loss.
How Air Bags Cause Eye Injuries?
If your eyes are in the path of an inflating airbag, they can be hurt by it. As a car’s speed increases, so does its stopping distance. A car traveling at 100 kilometers per hour (60 miles per hour) will require 88 meters (290 feet) to stop. Airbags can kill or seriously injure a child or pet. Keep them in a rear seat, as far back as possible, and always properly restrained. Generally, airbags save lives, but they can also cause injuries when they deploy. The eyes are particularly vulnerable to airbag injuries.
Generally, there are two ways in which airbags cause damage:
- Toxic Chemicals: Airbags can irritate your lungs and eyes when they deploy, so it’s important to know this. The chemicals in airbag inflators are released during this process, damaging your lungs.
- Impact of Deployment: The airbag in your car is there to protect you, but if it inflates rapidly or with too much force, then this can cause eye injuries. These include injuries to the iris of an individual’s eye; the damage done by collision. It could result in losing sight completely dependent upon how bad the collision was during these accidents. Lastly, severe cases involve penetration through skin layers all along the retina towards the back lining.
What Factors Increase the Risk of Air Bag Personal Injury Claim in Nevada?
When an airbag deploys, it can cause severe injuries to the eyes. The left eye is more vulnerable than the right because of its placement near where you sit. Non-tethered airbags with greater inflation distances aggravate the injury in many cases. Wearing glasses and not wearing a seatbelt are some other factors that can exacerbate the damage to the eyes.
What Types of Injuries Do Air Bags Cause?
The force of an airbag deploying can cause a range of injuries, including bruising and bleeding in the eye. On April 7, 2014, a woman driving on Interstate 5 in California hit the back of another car while trying to merge into traffic. The force deployed her airbag, which struck her in the face and resulted in vision loss. You can file a personal injury claim in Nevada for any one of the below injuries.
- Bruising: The impact from the airbag causes the black eye. It can result in broken blood vessels in the eye.
- Corneal Abrasion: Corneal abrasion, sometimes called traumatic corneal erosion, is a common eye injury that affects about 1.4 million Americans a year. Corneal abrasion is the wearing away or loss of the clear, dome-like outer surface (clear window) of the eye normally responsible for focusing vision. This surface is called the cornea, and like the clear window of a house, it allows light into the eye.
- Orbital Fracture: Orbital fracture is a break or crack in the wall of the bone surrounding your eye. This strong, protective bone is called the orbital roof. Impact with an airbag can fracture the bone surrounding the eye socket.
- Detached Retina: Airbag injuries can cause the retina to tear and detach. This is a severe condition that can lead to permanent vision loss.
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